Published: May 15, 2001
Trade News from around the World
A woman trying to recover six Gustav Klimt paintings she says were taken from her uncle by the Nazis in 1938 will be allowed to sue the Austrian government for their return, writes Judy Lin of the Associated Press. Maria V. Altmann claims the Austrian Gallery and the Republic of Austria are illegally holding the paintings, which she says are worth about $150 million. The paintings also are of substantial value to the art world. Klimt was a founder of the Vienna Secession art movement that for many became synonymous with Jugendstil, the German and central European version of Art Nouveau. The Austrian government had sought to have the case dismissed, arguing that any lawsuit should be taken up in Austria. But U.S. District Court Judge Florence-Marie Cooper ruled May 7 that she has jurisdiction over the case because, among other things, Altmann can reasonably claim Austria took the paintings in violation of international law.
Donald R. Friary, executive director and secretary at Historic Deerfield, Massachusetts, since 1975, and who has been on the museum staff since 1965, will retire from his present position December 31, 2002. At that time Friary will be named director emeritus and appointed to the newly created position of senior research fellow. Commenting on his plans to step down as executive director, Friary said, “Fostering the development of Historic Deerfield over these past 26 years has been an extraordinary experience. The growth of the museum and library collection, the expansion of programs, the increase in staff, the creation of the Flynt Center of Early New England Life, have been deeply rewarding professional experiences. Deerfield has been home to me and my family, it has shaped our lives and given much to us, as we have given much to it.”
Steve Bradley, the director of the Davenport Museum of Art, will leave his job, just as the community begins construction on a new $33 million art museum. Bradley resigns August 10. He has been museum director since 1992. An acting director will be appointed by the museum’s board of trustees as it begins a search for a replacement that could take up to eight months. Mayor Phil Yerington said Bradley’s recent job performance evaluation indicated the museum board of trustees did not give Bradley good marks. “In a nutshell, it showed disappointment with his performance and suggested it was time for him to start looking for other employment,” Yerington told AP.
Painter Robert Rauschenberg, considered one of the world’s living masters, was recovering May 8 from surgery to correct complications brought on by a fractured pelvis in Fort Myers, Fla. The artist was at Lee Memorial Hospital where he was listed in fair condition at the hospital’s intensive care unit. He underwent surgery May 4 to relieve internal bleeding caused when he fractured his pelvis in a fall April 29. Rauschenberg was injured when he slipped on a rug at his New York residence and fell, surgeon John Fenning, who is overseeing Rauschenberg’s care, told the Associated Press.
AP reports that the FBI has charged a man with selling fraudulent paintings attributed to famous artists on eBay. Federal authorities allege William S. Yager, 50, of the Rochester, N.Y. suburb of Perinton, bilked a couple from a Detroit suburb of nearly $250,000 in cash and in art they traded with Yager. The FBI used an undercover sting, purchasing alleged Degas paintings from Yager over the Internet that authorities confirmed were fakes, court papers claim. Yager, using the eBay user name “artfair,” offered for auction what he claimed was authentic artwork.
New York City and Museum of Modern Art officials broke ground May 10 on an ambitious new project that will double the museum’s exhibition space, says AP’s Katherine Roth. Designed by cutting edge Japanese architect Yoshio Taniguchi, the building will be faced in glass, aluminum and black slate. The $650 million expansion project radically reconfigures the museum while retaining familiar features like the sculpture garden and the facade on West 53rd Street. The museum’s new entrance will be moved a block north to West 54th Street, to the site now occupied by the Dorset Hotel. The building will provide larger, more flexible exhibition space, distinctive new galleries, and a dramatic lobby with a view of the sculpture garden and a soaring light-filled atrium. The museum has raised a total of $500 million – including $65 million in city funds – toward the project.
The National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., has acquired two “Monuments for V. Tatlin” (1967-1970) by Dan Flavin, a key figure of Minimal art, and “Lisp” (1968) by Edward Ruscha. The acquisition of these and other works – three photographs by Aaron Siskind from 1954 and one by John Cohen from 1959; the 1967 portfolio of lithographs by nine artists entitled “9,” which includes the gallery’s first lithographs by Richard Lindner and Saul Steinberg as well as prints by Willem de Kooning and Ellsworth Kelly, among others; and “Iliad” (circa 1970), a monoprint collagraph by Romare Bearden – were made possible by the gallery’s collectors committee.
The Yale Center for British Art, New Haven, Conn., announced the addition of 11 new works to the collection that were purchased or acquired through gifts and donations. Paintings include: Jean-Laurent Mosnier’s “Lady Callander & her son James Kearney,” 1795; L.S. Lowry’s “Morecambe Sands,” 1940; and Terry Frost’s “Linen Blue and Yellow,” 1961. Sculpture includes: Henry Moore’s “Interior Figure,” 1939-40; Henry Moore’s “Seated Woman Holding a Child,” 1982; Phillip King’s “Slant,” 1966; Tony Cragg’s “Grey Container,” 1983; Bill Woodrow’s “Stone Wall,” 1984; Richard Smith’s “Key Ring,” circa 1985; an untitled work by John Davies, 1988; and “Assumption of the Virgin,” Fifteenth Century Nottingham Alabaster, by an unknown artist.
The American Academy of Arts and Letters conducted its annual award and induction ceremony May 16 in the organization’s auditorium, 632 West 156 Street, New York City. Ned Rorem, president of the Academy, presided over the award presentations to more than 50 winners in art, architecture, literature, music and musical theater. John Hollander, secretary of the Academy, inducted new members into the Academy’s main body of 250: the architect Peter Eisenman and the artists Robert Mangold, Bruce Nauman, Dorothea Rockburne, Edward Ruscha, and Peter Voulkos, among others. The Gold Medal is the Academy’s highest honor, awarded annually in two categories which rotate among the disciplines of Belles Lettres and Criticism, and Painting; Biography and Music; Fiction and Sculpture; History and Architecture; Poetry and Music; and Drama and Graphic Art. Richard Serra received the Gold Metal for sculpture. Serra, known for his challenging, massive sculptures, has a worldwide reputation for his ability to engage viewers’ perceptions about space, architecture, and landscape.
Christie’s has announced the appointment of Amy Cappellazzo as senior vice president, international specialist head, Contemporary Art as of June 4. To be based in New York, Cappellazzo will lead the gallery’s biannual sales of contemporary art in New York and will coordinate the development of its contemporary art business on a worldwide basis. After running Christie’s International Contemporary Art Department for three years, Philippe Segalot is resigning this position to assume a new role at Christie’s. Based in New York, he will focus on contemporary art collectors and oversee special projects in the area of contemporary art. The firm has expanded their newly established Photographs Department on Los Angeles with a recent hiring of Amanda Doenitz as Specialist Head of Photographs. Doenitz comes to Christie’s Los Angeles from Butterfield’s in San Francisco, where she was director of Fine Photographs for three years.
The Mariners’ Museum, Newport News, Va., has received funding from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) to rehouse 1,290 maps dating from 1573 to 1899, a significant collection in the museum’s research library and archives. Conservation of its unique maps has been identified as a top priority in the long-range conservation plan of the museum. The $6,428 IMLS grant will be used to place 100 percent of the maps dating from 1573 to 1899 in archival-quality folders in new map cabinets.
Andrea Rich, president and director of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, received the 2001 Honorary Fellow Award of UCLA’s College Letters & Science on May 7. She was honored for more than 30 years of exceptional public service in education, the arts, and the community.
Dede Young has been appointed curator of Modern and Contemporary art at the Neuberger Museum of Art, Purchase, N.Y. In announcing the appointment, Lucinda H. Gedeon, PhD, director, Neuberger Museum of Art, stated that Young will assume primary responsibility for the management, care, research and interpretation of the museum’s Modern and Contemporary art collection.
Timothy H. Smith has been named managing director of The Armory Show – The International Fair of New Art, New York City. Smith joins Katelijne De Backer, director, and Isabelle Dupuis, assistant director, on the senior management staff. Prior to joining The Armory Show, Smith managed the New York office of AgEx.com, a business-to-business, e-commerce commodities exchange. Previously, he was executive vice president of The Manhattan Group.
Sharon W. Burklund has been named to the post of Marketing and Publicity Manager at Stella Show Management Company, New York City, as announced by Leanne Stella, president. Burklund is a former administrator for special projects at the Horticultural Society of New York.
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